“Cancer is a tough topic to talk about, but the best defense to saving you or a loved one’s life are early and regular screenings,” says Tricia Fisher, Director of Oncology Services at UnityPoint Health – Trinity.

That’s why UnityPoint Health– Trinity and Gilda’s Club Quad Cities are hosting free in-person educational workshops to help screen for colon cancer. Regular screenings are a key component in identifying colon cancer early and increasing survival rates. Grant support from the Iowa Cancer Consortium means UnityPoint Health – Trinity and Gilda’s Club Quad Cities can offer free educational workshops and at-home screening kits for Louisa, Muscatine and Scott County residents.

There are two upcoming workshops being offered in November:

• Thursday, November 3 from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Esperanza Center, 335 Fifth Avenue in Moline

 • Thursday, November 10 from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Davenport Public Library, 321 North Main Street in Davenport

Experts recommend people 45 or older should be screened for colon cancer, or earlier if they have a family history of colon cancer or irritable bowel syndrome. “Having no symptoms does not mean you don’t have colon cancer. Unfortunately, many people with colon cancer do not experience symptoms, especially in the early stages of the disease,” says Fisher. “The only way to know for sure is routine screenings.” Screenings are quick and easy, taking only minutes from the comfort of your home. Learn more by clicking here and call (309) 779-5796 to request a free at-home screening kit.

“Together, we’re making screenings more affordable and convenient, ensuring anyone who needs it can be screened,” says Fisher. “By increasing access to testing, we can help promote better outcomes with early detection.” Colorectal cancer is a disease in which early detection is important. The earlier doctors can find cancer, when it’s small and hasn’t spread, the easier it is to treat. Simple screenings can increase survival chances to nearly 95%.

“Receiving a cancer diagnosis is never easy. We are here to provide support, education and hope if results are not what people expected,” says Kelsey Allen, LMSW, LSW, Program Director at Gilda’s Club Quad Cities. “No one should face cancer alone.”

For more information on educational workshops and to request a free kit, click here.